Sehwag Stranded On 99 Not Out As India Take Win
India 171-4 (Sehwag 99no, Mathews 2-32) beat
Sri Lanka 170 (Randiv 43, Ojha 3-36) by six wickets
Tri-series One-Day International game three, Dambulla
Virender Sehwag was unbeaten on 99 as India beat Sri Lanka by six wickets in the third match of the One-Day International tri-series in Dambulla.
Having produced a creditable bowling performance to bowl the home side out for 170, India reached their target with more than 15 overs to spare to take their first win of the tri-series.
Their opening performance had seen them concede 288 against New Zealand and then themselves be dismissed for just 88 but their bowlers never allowed Sri Lanka's batsmen to settle and top scorers for the hosts were opener Tillakaratne Dilshan, who made 45, and Suraj Randiv, who battled hard to hit 43 before being the last man to fall in the 47th over.
India struck with the first ball of the match when Praveen Kumar had Upul Tharanga bowled and they hardly looked back, Ashish Nehra having Kumar Sangakkara caught by Pragyan Ojha for two, Ishant Sharma having Thilan Samaraweera caught by Ravi Jadeja for seven and Kumar trapping Mahela Jayawardene in front for four to leave Sri Lanka reeling at 44 for four.
Dilshan hit five fours before he became the first of Pragyan Ojha's three wickets, offering a catch to Rohit Sharma and the left-arm spinner went on to have Lasith Malinga (5) stumped and Randiv finally caught by Suresh Raina.
He had faced 61 balls, hitting four fours to keep Sri Lanka's score respectable, with Angelo Mathews (15), Chamara Kapugedera (10) and Nuwan Kulasekara (22) the only other players to reach double figures.
Ojha returned three for 36 with Kumar, Sharma and Jadeja all taking two wickets apiece.
India then moved to 30 without loss before losing three wickets for the addition of two runs as Dinesh Karthik (10) and Sharma (0) fell to Angelo Mathews and Virat Kohli became the first of two wickets for Dilhara Fernando.
Sehwag, who hit 11 fours and two sixes in his 100-ball innings, then shared a partnership worth 59 with Suresh Raina for the fourth wicket to steady the ship for India. Fernando ended the stand when Raina was caught by Tharanga having struggled for fluency during his 35-ball stay that garnered him 21 runs.
However, despite Sri Lanka working hard to take further wickets, India denied them with Sehwag just missing out on 13th ODI century and Mahendra Singh Dhoni hitting an unbeaten 23 to secure a comprehensive win that throws the series back open following a win apiece for all three sides involved.
Sehwag thought he had won the match and reached his century in style by smashing a Randiv no ball over long-off for a handsome six, although the match was effectively over once Randiv had delivered the no-ball.
© Cricket World 2010